7 Best Website Blockers For Productivity In 2024

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Imagine this: You are ready to crush your to-do list. You sit down, open your browser, and—BOOM! Those sneaky, distracting websites are calling your name, luring you into a deep, dark vortex of cat videos, memes, and social media rabbit holes.

But worry not, my productivity ninjas! With a website blocker by your side, distractions won’t stand a chance in your productivity battleground.

In this article, you’ll discover 7 top-notch website blockers for productivity to keep distractions at bay. No more falling prey to online time-suckers!

Ready to transform your browser into a lean, mean productivity machine? Let’s dive in and explore the best tools to help you stay focused and conquer your to-do list.

Top 3 website blockers in 2024:

Best Overall

Freedom
App

freedom blocker logo
  • Blocks websites during focus sessions
  • Option to block the entire web
  • Lots of pre-defined block lists
Best for mac

Cisdem AppCrypt

Cisdem AppCrypt website blocker logo
  • System-level blocking
  • Blocks websites and apps
  • Scheduled sessions
Best for focus

RescueTime
App

rescuetime website blocker logo
  • Productivity assistant app
  • Blocks distracting websites automatically
  • Focus timer

Why block websites?

As you navigate the digital world, you are constantly surrounded by tempting distractions just waiting to steal your focus. Blocking websites is your personal line of defense, helping you stay on track and boost productivity.

By setting up these virtual barriers, you can fully concentrate on important work. Studies have shown that people who use website-blocking software are more productive and can focus for significantly longer periods of time.

There is plenty of scientific evidence that distractions damage productivity at work. From diluting attention to affecting your mental health and even lowering your IQ in the long run, frequent interruptions can cause a lot of trouble.

So, when you block those enticing distractions, you are not only accomplishing more, but you are also giving your brain a well-deserved break from the endless bombardment of digital interruptions.

What are the best website blockers for productivity?

1. Freedom

Best website blocker for productivity

freedom is the best website blocking app for productivity

Freedom website blocker is a powerful tool designed to help you take control of your digital life and improve your productivity. With over 2.5 million users, Freedom is a useful app developed based on recent studies highlighting the importance of managing distractions in today’s world.

By using Freedom, you can break the cycle of constantly checking your devices and instead develop healthier habits for interacting with technology.

This website blocker allows you to eliminate distractions by blocking specific websites and apps, or even block the entire internet, if necessary. With digital interruptions out of the way, you can concentrate on a single task and dive deep into your workflow.

freedom blocked website
An example of Freedom site blocker in use

As you start small and gradually build up to longer periods of focused work, you can develop better habits, such as checking your email no more than once a day and engaging with social media on your own terms.

Many users have reported a significant increase in productivity after experiencing the tranquil, distraction-free environment Freedom provides. Whether you want a simple program to block websites or a full-blown internet blocking software, Freedom is your best choice in 2024.

Best features of Freedom

  • Blocks websites, apps, or the entire internet
  • Works on Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, and Chrome
  • Helps you break bad technology habits that interrupt your work
  • Creates a focused environment for productivity
  • Has additional free Chrome extension options for better focus
My experience with Freedom

Freedom is my favorite tool for blocking websites when I need to get things done! I have a yearly subscription and leverage distraction-free focus sessions to get in the flow and prevent myself from context-switching. I love that it lets me block different sets of websites depending on what I need for work.

(Use code JULIETY30 for 30% off)

2. Cisdem AppCrypt

Best website blocker for Mac

cisdem is the best website blocker for mac

Cisdem AppCrypt is a reliable website blocker and application locker designed specifically for Mac users. This versatile tool helps you block both online and offline distractions, keep children safe from inappropriate websites, and protect your privacy by securing data from unauthorized access.

AppCrypt allows you to lock applications with a single password, which gives you complete control of what happens on your Mac, even when you aren’t around. For example, it can prevent your kid from purchasing games or accessing your personal photos or documents.

The tool offers a range of features, including the ability to block access to harmful or distracting websites across various browsers, set up predefined schedules for app and website usage, and monitor failed attempts to open locked apps.

Best features of Cisdem AppCrypt

  • Block access to harmful or distracting websites
  • Can also block apps offline on system level
  • Lock applications with a single password
  • Set up predefined schedules for app and website usage
  • Self-protection against forced quitting and deletion (no cheating!)
  • Low CPU usage and invisible background operation
Why choose AppCrypt

AppCrypt is a great website-blocking software if you are a Mac user. Whether you want to block distracting apps, protect your kids from harmful websites, or keep your team members focused on a project, Cisdem AppCrypt will be there for you, blocking websites and applications on a system level so you can’t easily cheat it.

3. RescueTime

Best focus app with website blocking

rescuetime productivity tool blocks websites when you need to focus

RescueTime is an award-winning productivity tool that has been trusted by millions of users to help them stay focused and motivated.

This innovative software serves as a smart productivity assistant, integrating seamlessly into the taskbar of your PC or Mac to provide personalized daily Focus Work goals based on your work style, meeting schedule, and best practices from their data analytics.

RescueTime offers subtle, smart guidance throughout the day, providing valuable insights, gentle reminders to help you maintain focus, and daily wrap-ups highlighting your accomplishments.

Finally, the Focus Sessions feature identifies the apps and sites that hinder your productivity and offers automatic time-tracking, distraction blocking, and in-depth reporting to help you focus and understand where your time goes.

For example, if you attempt to access YouTube during a focus session with this website blocking software running in the background, the RescueTime app will block the site and show you a pretty warning instead.

how website blocked with rescuetime looks like

Best features of RescueTime

  • Personalized daily Focus Work goals
  • Smart coaching to keep you on track
  • Focus Sessions to minimize distractions
  • Handy Chrome browser extension for automatic time tracking
  • Insight into apps and sites that disrupt your productivity
My experience with RescueTime

RescueTime is an amazing productivity assistant that tracks how you spend your time and nudges you to stay focused on the task to ensure no day is wasted. I’ve been using it for a while, and I appreciate that it blocks all distracting websites automatically when I start a focus session.

4. FocusMe

Website blocker that forces you to be productive

focusme software tool to block online distractions

FocusMe is a fully customizable website blocking tool designed to help you conquer digital distractions and improve your online habits, ultimately reclaiming valuable time.

By blocking, limiting, or rationing time spent on entertaining websites and apps, FocusMe encourages you to be productive without compromise. The powerful Force Mode provides an extra level of control when it’s necessary to go “nuclear” and eliminate distractions completely.

In today’s digital age, constant distractions and addictive design elements make it difficult to maintain self-control. FocusMe can help you break the cycle and unleash your true potential at work and beyond so you can increase productivity and achieve all your goals.

Best features of FocusMe

  • Customizable website blocking according to your preferences
  • Powerful Force Mode for extreme focus
  • Allows you to set a time limit for particular websites
  • Good for personal focus, parental control, or team management
  • Works on Mac, Windows, Linux, and Android
  • No-risk trial with 60-day moneyback guarantee
Why choose FocusMe

If you are looking for a strict blocker that is impossible to bypass, FocusMe is your best bet. Many users mention that it’s the only tool they weren’t able to cheat – so they were forced to actually be productive. FocusMe will leave you no choice but to get things done.

5. Cold Turkey

Best simple website blocker for Mac and Windows

cold turkey software for blocking internet distractions

Ready to quit distractions cold turkey?

Cold Turkey tool is designed to help you enhance your productivity by blocking websites, apps, and games that are eating up your time. It’s a simple but tough website blocker that allows you to “lock” your scheduled time block, which makes it almost impossible to cheat or stop the block once it’s locked.

Cold Turkey prioritizes your privacy by storing all settings and statistics locally on your computer, and you can even set an application password for extra security.

The best part? Their premium version is a one-time purchase with no subscription needed, which gives you long-term productivity benefits and free lifetime updates.

Best features of Cold Turkey blocker

  • Multiple ways to block websites and apps
  • Almost impossible to cheat once the focus time is locked
  • Frozen Turkey feature to take a break from your computer
  • It’s a desktop app, which means you can strictly block distracting websites and apps to boost your productivity
  • Statistics on apps and websites that waste most of your time
  • Works on all computers you personally use with just one product key

Pricing

Free version of ColdTurkey website blocking app allows you to block certain websites for a specified duration of time while pro version (one-time payment, $39) also lets you block applications, schedule block sessions with breaks, set passwords, and more.

6. Serene App

Best distraction blocker for creative work

serene app blocker preview

Are you a creative professional tired of battling distractions? Let Serene, the macOS app created for laser focus, become your secret weapon!

Designed to help you achieve your goals, Serene implements a 3-step technique to empower you to stay focused and achieve more.

First, you define a single goal for the day and break your day into focused sessions. During those sessions, Serene blocks distractions and provides focus enhancers to help you dive deep into your work and prioritize the important tasks. Finally, it incorporates Pomodoro-like countdown timers to keep you focused on that one goal.

Serene is tailored for creative professionals across various fields, including entrepreneurs, marketers, developers, freelancers, designers, and writers, providing them with the tools they need to maintain good productivity levels and produce results.

Best features of Serene app

  • Day planning with a clear goal in mind
  • Distraction blocking during focused sessions
  • Countdown timers to work on specific tasks
  • Known as the best website blocker for studying

7. PawBlock

Best website blocking extension for animal lovers

pawblock simple website blocker preview

PawBlock is a delightful browser extension designed for animal lovers who want to stay focused and avoid distractions. By blocking selected websites, PawBlock helps you get things done while providing adorable visuals of sad or happy animal faces, depending on your browsing choices.

This lovely free tool allows you to still see a cute cat here and there, even when distracting yourself with cat videos on YouTube and other media websites is unavailable.

Installing PawBlock is as simple as adding the extension to your browser and setting up a list of sites you’d like to block. When you attempt to visit a blocked site, you’ll be greeted by a sad animal face, reminding you to return to your task at hand. Once you are back on track, a joyful animal face will appear to celebrate your willpower.

Best features of PawBlock

  • Easy installation on Chrome and Firefox
  • Customizable list of sites to block
  • Adorable animal faces to encourage focus
  • Completely free, with no premium features to pay for

What is a website blocker?

A website blocker is a software tool or browser extension designed to restrict access to specific websites or apps. By blocking or limiting access to time-consuming, distracting, or inappropriate websites, you can improve your focus and productivity and stay safer online.

Website blockers are often utilized by students and professionals seeking to improve their work and study efficiency, parents aiming to protect their children from harmful content, and organizations trying to maintain a focused work environment by keeping their team members distraction-free.

How does a website blocker work?

A website blocker stops you from visiting specific websites or applications by using the rules and settings that you choose. When you try to go to a blocked site, the blocker will either take you to a different page, show a message saying the site is blocked, or replace the site with something else.

Website blockers can be separate apps or browser extensions. They use different methods to identify and block unwanted websites, like filtering website addresses or certain words. You can often customize the websites you want to block, set time windows for blocking, and allow certain sites or people to bypass the block.

What happens when you block a website?

When you block a website, it becomes inaccessible on your device or browser. Instead of being able to view the content of the blocked site, you’ll typically see a message or a placeholder image indicating that the site has been blocked. The specific message or image might vary depending on the website blocker tool you are using.

Is it possible to unblock blocked websites?

Yes, it is possible to unblock blocked websites. However, many tools intentionally make it extremely difficult to ensure you stay focused and not give in to digital temptations.

How to access a website when it’s blocked?

Accessing a blocked website may require different methods depending on which program to block websites you use. While some website blockers can be simply disabled or adjusted in the settings, others are cheating-protected and make you wait for the blocking duration to expire.

What are the criteria for choosing the best website blocker for productivity?

A good website blocker should be able to effectively restrict access to specified websites while being user-friendly and customizable. It should allow users to create personalized blocklists, set schedules for focused time periods, and provide options for temporary access or taking breaks.

Additionally, the best website blocker app should be compatible with various browsers and devices and ensure user privacy by not collecting or sharing any personal data or browsing activity. When used for parental control, it might also offer password protection to prevent unauthorized changes and app access.

Final thoughts on best website blockers for 2024

Now you know all about the best website-blocking software tools available in 2024!

Whether you are a student looking to focus on your studies, a professional striving for productivity, or a parent concerned about your child’s online safety, there’s a website blocker out there that can help you achieve your goals.

For those who need a little extra help with getting into a productive mood, Freedom and RescueTime are great options to consider, providing not only website-blocking features but also automatic time-tracking to understand your personal work patterns.

Frequently asked questions

For team productivity, Freedom is the ideal choice among website blockers. Freedom has a special plan for teams that allows a team administrator to build schedules and block distracting websites for all team members, increasing everyone’s productive time.

Freedom and Cold Turkey are the best website-blocking tools for students who want to be more productive. By blocking specific websites and apps, or even the entire internet, they ensure that you avoid procrastination and maintain focus on your studies.

Cisdem AppCrypt is the best website blocking tool with parental control features, but it’s only available for Mac users. FocusMe is a close second that can also be used on Windows, Linux, and Android.

PawBlock is a simple cat-friendly solution for personal use when you need to block online distractions at home. Freedom is the best professional website blocker for Google Chrome, and it has additional free extensions for deeper focus.

Cisdem AppCrypt is the best website blocker for Safari users on macOS. As a Mac app, Cisdem AppCrypt blocks websites across all browsers, including Safari. With its password protection and customized blocking schedule features, it provides a reliable solution for Safari users who want to minimize distractions and stay productive.

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